When Clouds Touch the Ground - Scale Faster

I've put a new spin on our managed I.T. services and cloud computing business and that's Scale Faster.  Scale Faster is a retail experience built from the ground up with our customers and future customers in mind. 

Let's face it...most people don't want to (and shouldn't) deal with I.T. but most feel they are treated to a ho hum experience driven by "nerds" who have been "let out into the field." 

Our goal is to deliver an amazing experience that starts the moment a future customer walks into our store.  Stop by and see for yourself.

Scale Faster - Managed I.T. & Cloud Computing for Small to Medium Sized Businesses innovates at 2035 100th St., Suite F, in Clive, IA 50325.


My head is firmly in the clouds with PC Central

I stepped into the leadership role in a great small business on December 1.  The company is called PC Central and it does small business cloud computing here in Des Moines.  As I started integrating into the company and culture, I found that people I've known for years, companies I use, and friends are all using PC Central Managed IT Services.  

That was pretty cool and immediately helped me understand the market and what kind of customer experience we're delivering.

As I continue to build up and build out, I plan on making a bold statement with things like startup development stack bundles so nascent companies can have the computing power they need on demand without the burden of hardware costs, long contracts, or support.  Just ask Des Moines WordPress Developer Andy Brudtkuhl about the Dev Stack option.   He's rockin' out the Visual Studio in the cloud and grabbed 2 "seats" so he could power his awesome IT recruiting disrupter raygun staffninja.

Updates as we go buy I'm very pleased with our progress so far.  Look out world.

There Is No Secret School of Business

Whatever anyone tells you, there is no Secret School of Business or New World Order

My Strategic Marketing Plan

Cropped-edited-bustshot I'm pleased to announce that I've joined BirdDog (a part of the 14 year old Industry People Group, Inc.) as its Vice President of Marketing here in Urbandale, IA. BirdDog is a Candidate Acquisition & Management System for the Construction, Infrastructure, Engineering, and Facilities sectors. Watch the video below and check out the awesome animation work of Adam Beecher.

Many of you know that I've been spending most of my time there since June of this year in a full-time contract engagement. The early July announcement of my partnership with Andrew Clark (@thebrandchef) was the first phase of my transition to this new role.

The completion of BirdDog's round of funding from Dewaay Investment Partners I, LLLP announced a few weeks ago meant that I could execute the next part of the plan which was fully handing over all operations and client relationships, and taking a more public role at BirdDog. That process is complete. I cannot express enough gratitude to all the passionate clients and freelancers who propped me up and helped me build a success story. Thank you.

Some of you may ask, why? Small business in multimedia and web strategy...growing client base and revenues...low overhead and a recovering economy...etc. Well the decision didn't come lightly...but I had a nagging voice in the back of my skull that kept craving "focus". My body and brain were craving a nexus around which my efforts could orbit. After 3 years of cranking, a long term contract was the initial desire but the team here at BirdDog was such a great fit, the business plan was aggressive and well funded, that I couldn't pass this up.  I am truly getting to execute everything I did for 15 companies...inside one organization and toward one goal with a great team. This team is aggressive like a 14 year old start-up and anyone who knows me knows that I thrive in that environment.

I'd be lying if I said spending more time with my busier than ever family wasn't on my mind too. The timing was right for me to simplify things and reacquaint myself with being there and not just "being there". We're moving into a great new office at 2900 100th St. just up from Hickman this weekend and by Monday, my office will transform into a full blown multimedia studio as we ramp content production of all kinds. I welcome you to stop by and see what we're up to on this new adventure. Thank you so much for your support and know that you're in good hands with Andrew at createWOWmarketing. He's absolutely the perfect partner to keep creating WOW in Central Iowa.  

What about OperationRedState.com Doug? OperationRedState has always been a passionate pursuit and will continue to be so. It has always co-existed with our other work and projects and it will continue to do so. I still have an excellent team of content ninjas and strategists that develop winning online campaign strategies. ___________ I'm still speaking and would love to do more and I'm about 11,000 words into my new book "The Multi-Thread Marketer" and I anticipate its release in December/January time frame. This is my first full length business book and I find myself rising at ungodly early hours with chapters burning across my synapses. I can't wait to get this into the market and see how it does. I will print a few copies for hand outs at engagements...but this will primarily be ebook driven on iBook/Amazon/etc. Until we meet again in person or virtually, thank you.


Official Release Text:


Kelly Moore (for BirdDog)
[email protected]

BirdDog Adds VPs as Part of Re-branding Effort

DES MOINES, Iowa (October 26, 2010) – Niche talent acquisition and management company BirdDog has added two vice presidents to its team of associates. The hires are part of a strategic re-branding the company has launched to expand its employer client base in the construction, infrastructure, engineering and facilities markets.

Doug Mitchell has joined BirdDog as vice president of marketing. In 2007, Mitchell founded interactive marketing firm createWOWmedia, which delivered marketing strategy and execution services to Iowa companies. The company, now createWOWmarketing, continues under the ownership of Des Moines marketing professional Andrew Clark, a.k.a. The Brand Chef.

Hailing from California where he spent five years as vice president of marketing for a technology company, Mitchell authored the ebook, “Confessions of an Ex-Enterprise Salesperson:  What I Really Meant When I Said _____,” and is currently writing “The Multi-Thread Marketer: How to Identify and Hire Marketing Leaders in the Hyper-Economy,” which is scheduled for a December 2010 release.

“Doug’s experience in driving demand and customer engagement through online media is precisely what this company needs,” said Marc Sampson, BirdDog’s founder and CEO, “Thanks to Doug’s expertise, BirdDog has already made a quantum leap forward in its marketing efforts.”

Now BirdDog’s vice president of business development, Scott Prohaska has worked closely with engineering, oil and gas, refining, petro-chemical and power plant customers throughout his career. A mechanical engineer, Prohaska spent more than 11 years with Emerson Electric where he held various positions, including hiring manager. In this position, Prohaska sourced, recruited, hired and managed engineers, sales specialists, mechanics and service technicians. As such, he is uniquely qualified to understand what is important to BirdDog employer clients.

Like Mitchell, Prohaska is a former business owner. Prior to joining BirdDog, he owned and operated L.R.S., a high performance parts and race chassis manufacturing company, as well as Magnum Fabrication, a manufacturing and service-based business.

Mitchell and Prohaska will work toward several goals that come as a result of BirdDog’s recent influx of funding, led by DeWaay Investment Partners I, LLLP. The pair will drive market and customer development, as well as execute an extensive interactive marketing campaign for BirdDog’s candidate acquisition and management system.

About BirdDog
Founded in Des Moines in 1997 as Industry People Group, BirdDog hunts and retrieves specialized candidates then tracks and manages them through to the hire in the construction, infrastructure, facilities and engineering industries. The company powers niche job boards BirdDogJobs.com, MEPjobs.com, ASHRAEjobs.com, and AGCiajobs.com, connecting employers with jobseekers online. In addition, BirdDog offers a robust Web-based tool providing employers with simplified cross-posting and paperless management tools, reducing the time and investment required to bring top talent on board. For more information, visit birddogjobs.com or follow on Twitter @birddog_jobs.

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Best Buy Has Musicial Instruments and Recording - Live Sound Gear

Image via Wikipedia

I just cruised over to the Best Buy in West Des Moines on University Ave. to recycle another 2 electronic devices including a laptop and a printer...and found that Best Buy now has a musical instrument section stocked with mixers, some mics, cables, and DJ equipment.

The key for me is that they carry a rotating rack of Hosa Adapters (the bane of my live sound recording).  "Do we have one of those dooohickeys that does that dealwupmus?"  Nope.  Blurgh!

Back to recycling.  If you have old stuff, Best Buy will take it with zero hassle.  If it has a "screen" like a TV or laptop, they charge you $10 and give you a $10 gift card on the spot.  Total transaction time w/no line about 32 seconds.  Nice.

So don't toss those old PC's in the trash.  Let the pros handle it.  Recycle them for free.

Then go buy a mic and mixer and start a podcast in the same day.  Yeah...you.

The Power of Face...to Facebook Communication

In the last 48 hours I was:

  1. Found organically by an organization looking to do some video work in a specific niche here in Des Moines.  The firm is NOT anywhere near Des Moines and they found me.
  2. Re-contacted by someone who heard me speak at an event that led to another event where they heard me again...and now they're at another firm and are "finished with their agency contract and looking for new ideas and options to grow their organic findability.

Never discount the power of being findable online...nor the power of speaking to groups in person passionately.  That's connecting Face...to Facebook.

Biz Tactical inaugural show streaming LIVE! from ABI convention

A while back I had this crazy idea about creating an Extreme Makeover show for Iowa Businesses.  So I sat down and created Biz Tactical.  Biz Tactical is modeled after the show called "We Mean Business" on A&E.

Video about the show below.

We will take submissions from businesses that want HELP!  We'll assemble a panel of experts and descend upon this business bringing tangible resources, connections, and solutions that rapidly accelerate success.
We're building our team of panelists and the show's anchor hosts are myself and Adam Steen.  I'm proud to announce that we'll be doing our first show from the upcoming Iowa Association of Business and Industry convention at Lake Okoboji on June 10 at 530PM.  The show will be produced as a live radio broadcast with commercials and special sponsored segments.

If YOU are going to the ABI convention, please stop by the social media suite upstairs where you'll find the createWOWmedia team coaching, connecting, and capturing the excellence of the ABI membership.

Disturbance in the Force

I've been sensing a positive disturbance in the force.  Larger companies are calling me and saying, "We're ready to learn" albeit at "Big Co." pace.  Interesting this one.  Wise are they.  Being made progress is.

--Yoda Mitchell 

Thought Dump

  1. Took my boy to McDonalds on Mills Civic, the one in the Kum N Go.  Never again ever in a million years.  No one, including "management" knew what was going on.  Unapologetic and apathetic mediocrity.  Not that I should expect more...or should I expect some level of accuracy and care from one of the best "systems" in the world?
  2. Bought bread at Gateway Market.  Been very impressed with everything there (maybe with the exception of the help).  Not bad mind you...just average.  I always find it "that much tougher" to pay x % more for items there (the normal items I find elsewhere for less) when there's no service premium.  I think I'm mostly describing the cashier/checkout folks.  The cheese people seem to have the service thing nailed.  I guess Cheese just inspires!  (Now they just need a bacon department)
  3. Been totally immersed in the launch of Operation Red State.  The tagline is that ORS provides remarkably affordable technology and new media training for conservative candidates and campaigns.  Launch event is Tax Day and we've already had 4 Iowa House Members confirm attendance. We're expecting Conservative leaders and politicos from all over to herald the arrival of a most powerful weapon in the grassroots conservative arsenal. 
  4. My speaking engagement at Entrefest in Coralville Iowa early this March has resulted in 4 additional speaking opportunities around the state.  I need to invest in that Cisco Holographic Video Conferencing technology so when I get asked to speak in Boston or LA I can do it remotely.  You can keep flying for yourselves. 
  5. I've been humbled by the feedback on the Managing The Edge weekly Internet Business Podcast.  I believe that quite a few people are benefiting from this weekly dive into becoming findable and engaging on the web.   
  6. We have a VERY special takeaway/parting gift for our Operation Red State launch.  I cannot claim the idea...but it's good.  Very good.  Talk about memorable.

More to come.  Operating at 175% of capacity. 

The Google Quotient: 100% over 6 months

Everywhere I speak, I do a bit of market research to open my talk.  Here's how it goes:

"Hello I'm Doug Mitchell, on the count of 3 please shout out the first place you look for a person, place, product, or service? One...two...three...GOOGLE! Anyone disagree?  NO." (100% of hands go up and no one disagrees)

Now, How many of you have any real money allocated in your marketing budgets to become findable where 100% of you just said everyone is looking FIRST? (1 or 2 hands go up).  Interesting!  Does that make ANY SENSE? NOOOOO!

This sets the stage for a very interesting conversation and really gets people thinking.  Yes there are other search engines...but the point remains.